Last house on South Broadway remains in the family - KLTV.com-Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville, Texas | ETX News

Last house on South Broadway remains in the family

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Neta Smith gathering laundry as she always has. (Source: KLTV staff) Neta Smith gathering laundry as she always has. (Source: KLTV staff)
TYLER, TX (KLTV) -

It was there before Tyler grew south and it’s still there now. We’re talking about the only house on South Broadway. It was built in 1931 and it’s still occupied by members of the same family at 6920 South Broadway.

We spoke with the owners of the last house standing.

It’s easy to drive right by without noticing the house on South Broadway across from Jack-In-The-Box. Pizza delivery folks have a hard time finding it, but through the trees there is a well-taken care of home with a manicured yard.

Neta Smith was one of 14 children. She lives in the house with her sister, Gay. Her dad, Charles Smith, bought 50 acres in 1930 and built the house with his brother’s help. Each of the children got an acre.

“And then Daddy sold everything but the acre this house is sitting on to the Coleman Brothers, who were supposed to supposed to build houses on it but didn’t,” Smith said.

Her dad made the deal with a handshake, but the land was sold for businesses. Eventually the other kids sold their land, too. But Neta and Gay got the house, and they stayed.

At one time, there were beds in nearly every room.

“So this is a six bedroom house,” I observed.

“If you want to count the porch,” Smith laughed.

There were beds there once too. There are no halls in the house. Neta’s dad thought halls were a waste of space, and they needed a big kitchen for 16 people.

“We’re going through the master bedroom into the kitchen,” I said.

Neta says they have few guests because you have to go through bedrooms to get anywhere.

“We still can,” Neta revealed.

“You still can what?” I asked Neta.

“Vegetables,” she clarified.

They also still hang laundry to dry in the breeze. Neta says the manager of the bank that was once next door complained about seeing their laundry. The sisters made sure they hung nothing but underwear the next time he was around. He never said another word after that.

When people say they lived somewhere their whole life, it’s not quite like Neta’s story. She has never lived in another house, and was born in what is now the living room.

Neta and Gay Smith are having a garage sale this Friday and Saturday to help pay taxes. They also have something else for sale: the property. They’re asking $2 million for their acre, but it doesn’t include the house.

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